MBIO19013 - Environmental Microbiology

General Information

Unit Synopsis

This unit builds upon the basic microbiological concepts learned in first year and applies them to an environmental context. In this unit you will learn about the various microbial groups and develop a sound understanding of their relevance and importance in both natural and industrial environments. This unit has a very applied and practical focus, covering both field and laboratory microbiological methods. You will learn and apply practical skills which also include employability skills in the area of microbiology.


Level Undergraduate
Unit Level 2
Credit Points 6
Student Contribution Band SCA Band 2
Fraction of Full-Time Student Load 0.125
Pre-requisites or Co-requisites

Pre-requisite: BIOL11102 Life Science Laboratory

Important note: Students enrolled in a subsequent unit who failed their pre-requisite unit, should drop the subsequent unit before the census date or within 10 working days of Fail grade notification. Students who do not drop the unit in this timeframe cannot later drop the unit without academic and financial liability. See details in the Assessment Policy and Procedure (Higher Education Coursework).

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Residential School Compulsory Residential School
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Unit Availabilities from Term 1 - 2024

Term 2 - 2024 Profile
Mixed Mode

Attendance Requirements

All on-campus students are expected to attend scheduled classes – in some units, these classes are identified as a mandatory (pass/fail) component and attendance is compulsory. International students, on a student visa, must maintain a full time study load and meet both attendance and academic progress requirements in each study period (satisfactory attendance for International students is defined as maintaining at least an 80% attendance record).

Assessment Overview

Recommended Student Time Commitment

Each 6-credit Undergraduate unit at CQUniversity requires an overall time commitment of an average of 12.5 hours of study per week, making a total of 150 hours for the unit.

Assessment Tasks

Assessment Task Weighting
1. Presentation and Written Assessment 20%
2. Practical and Written Assessment 30%
3. Online Test 50%

This is a graded unit: your overall grade will be calculated from the marks or grades for each assessment task, based on the relative weightings shown in the table above. You must obtain an overall mark for the unit of at least 50%, or an overall grade of ‘pass’ in order to pass the unit. If any ‘pass/fail’ tasks are shown in the table above they must also be completed successfully (‘pass’ grade). You must also meet any minimum mark requirements specified for a particular assessment task, as detailed in the ‘assessment task’ section (note that in some instances, the minimum mark for a task may be greater than 50%).

Consult the University’s Grades and Results Policy for more details of interim results and final grades

Past Exams

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Previous Feedback

Term 2 - 2022 : The overall satisfaction for students in the last offering of this course was 100.00% (`Agree` and `Strongly Agree` responses), based on a 55.56% response rate.

Feedback, Recommendations and Responses

Every unit is reviewed for enhancement each year. At the most recent review, the following staff and student feedback items were identified and recommendations were made.

Source: Have your say button
Students preferred having the online test spread into three throughout the term.
The online tests will remain separate and spread out.
Action Taken
Online tests remained separate and spread out.
Source: Have your say button
Students loved the practical aspects of the unit.
The residential school will remain an important part of the unit, and will mostly stay as is.
Action Taken
The residential school continued.
Source: Have your say button
Some students stated there were too many assessment pieces.
The assessment pieces will be evaluated to see if reducing the number of parts is possible.
Action Taken
Assessment was reviewed.
Source: SUTE
Students gave positive feedback about the residential school.
Continue residential school in current, or similar, format.
Action Taken
Unit learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, you will be able to:

  1. Describe the relationships between form and function, genetics, and growth dynamics in the major microbial groups
  2. Explain the fundamental principles of environmental microbiology
  3. Discuss the role of microbial interactions with the environment and other organisms, including industrial applications
  4. Discuss sampling, processing and analysis methods with respect to environmental microorganisms
  5. Practice and demonstrate selected microbiological procedures in the laboratory in a safe and efficient manner
  6. Interpret the results of laboratory experiments both individually and in groups.

Alignment of Assessment Tasks to Learning Outcomes
Assessment Tasks Learning Outcomes
1 2 3 4 5 6
1 - Presentation and Written Assessment
2 - Practical and Written Assessment
3 - Online Test
Alignment of Graduate Attributes to Learning Outcomes
Introductory Level
Intermediate Level
Graduate Level
Graduate Attributes Learning Outcomes
1 2 3 4 5 6
1 - Communication
2 - Problem Solving
3 - Critical Thinking
4 - Information Literacy
5 - Team Work
7 - Cross Cultural Competence
8 - Ethical practice
9 - Social Innovation
Alignment of Assessment Tasks to Graduate Attributes
Introductory Level
Intermediate Level
Graduate Level
Assessment Tasks Graduate Attributes
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
1 - Presentation and Written Assessment
2 - Practical and Written Assessment
3 - Online Test